Nov 20; Portland, OR, USA; Washington State Cougars head coach Ken Bone sends guard DaVonte Lacy (3) into the game against the Portland Pilots during the first half at the Chiles Center. Mandatory Credit: Jim Z. Rider

Washington State Mens Basketball: Lacy up!

Well it’s that time of year again.  Snow is on the ground, the NBA is going, NFL playoffs are shaping up and the College Football season is sadly coming to an end.  The brightest spot to me though is the NCAA Basketball season is underway! (That and the fact I now live in San Francisco so there is no snow for me).  This year I’m looking forward to the college basketball season because we have a young team who is getting better and if they can put some things together early this season, they might have a chance to compete in the Pac12 and really mix things up!

Leading the charge is the seasoned Brock Motum.  In his Career as a Coug Brock is fifth all time in field goal percentage at 56.7%  Last year He started every single game until the final 3 with an ankle injury.  Brock Led the Pac12 in scoring points per game at 18!  He was first team all Pac12 and the leagues most improved player.  Oozing with Ausie Swag, Ol’ Brock is poised to continue his success from his Junior season as the leading scorer on the team and one of the Major threats in the Pac12.  Big B also faces a much improved Pac12 Conference this year so he is going to have to take his game to another level.  He obviously took control of his game on the post we just need him to finish a few more of his quick post moves that rolled out last year. Then I think he will have “turned the corner” for what we need that position to produce.

The player I’m most excited to see develop is young Davonte Lacy. Last year Lacy started 30 games, 29 of those were in the final 30 games of the season.  He averaged 8.5 points per game and hit from downtown 1.6 times per game.  Since he set foot on campus, we all knew someday this kid was going to be the leader of our team.  Now, we didn’t know if that was going to be a good thing, as in he’s leading our top 25 team in their run to the NCAA tourney or a bad thing as in he’s good enough to lead our team who can’t seem to get a win in the Pac12.  I think (maybe not this year) he will be the leader of a very good team.  Lacy has showcased he has the scoring ability, body size and athleticism to become an elite player in the Pac12 but he has to own it.  Last year Lacy was a contributor, in the shadow of the previous leaders of the team (Reggie Moore, Abe Lodwick, Brock Motum) this year Ken Bone is calling on him to be a leader!  I can’t wait to see him grow into this role, I believe when he does our team will take a huge step in the direction of an NCAA Tourney post season rather than a CBI Tourney post season.

Ladd is on the loose too.  Ladd is in his red shirt senior year and this is it for him, he has done everything he could to have the opportunity to be a key player in a big conference and this is his year.  After transferring from Fresno State, Mike had issues with injury last year.  He missed 11 games and only started in 1.  He did however appear in 26 games and had his WSU career high scoring performance vs Gonzaga with 13 points.  Stepping up and making the most of his opportunity Mike Ladd has a chance to become an impact player for the Cougs, someone to call on in key situations if need be.  Ladd is a hard worker on the court and his had work plus timing pays off greatly on both defense and offense.  D.J. Shelton is also an interesting look for the Cougs. He pulls down rebounds and he also Generates a little offense.  In his RS. Sophomore season he appeared in 35 of the teams 37 games. D.J. established himself as a force by coming up with the second most dunks on the team at 13.  He had his career high scoring performance last year as well vs Oregon state with 13 points and 9 rebounds.  If he can take that offensive role and enhance it, the Cougs will be able to keep up on the inside throughout Pac12 play.

Exciting things are happening this season so let’s get out there and support these boys.  Next on our schedule is Utah Valley on Wednesday.  Can’t wait to see the progression this season and what other players step up and surprise us.  We’ll be here all season giving you previews, matchups and inside stories.

Tags: Basketball Washington State Cougars

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